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Old 12-11-2010, 09:30 AM
 
4 posts, read 6,039 times
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Hi,

I am seeking advice from pet owners whose cats have hyperthyroid disease.

My 17 yr old, beautiful furbaby was diagnosed about 2 months ago with advanced hyperT disease. I was told he also has a heart murmur and a little hypertension.

He was placed on methimazole 5mg tabs (cut in half) 2X day and has now been switched to the flavored liquid (which is not easy to administer and mildly unpleasant for both of us. I hate doing this to him. The medication forces me to bother him while he is resting or sleeping and I try to make it as pleasant as can be and follow it up with lots of kisses, treats and picking him up and speaking softly to him, but I can feel his heart beating so fast and I know he is afraid of me now and I fear this act I perform twice per day, is destroying a wonderful bond I spent building for 16 years) I can see he is already a little hesitant to be around me and he actually ran from me this morning.

I want my baby to live the rest of his life as he was, plump, happy and healthy, so I want to go ahead and proceed with radiothine therapy. I have not discussed this in depth with his vet yet.

My first concern is more of confusion as to the link between methimazole and kidney function. I am really confused as to how the methimazole affects the kidneys (if it even does) and if the long term use of methimazole treatment is unmasking the kidney disease or is it linked to causing it???? Am I trading off one problem for another?

The doctor said his kidneys were fine right before he was placed on the meds, but a month later she is still saying he needs to have his kidneys checked. I don't understand, if his kidneys were fine and he's put on the meds and she wants to check his kidneys again that leads me to believe that the meds may harm his kidneys. Can anyone provide an answer to this confusion?

Another fear is that my baby will not be a candidate for radiothine because of these other factors:

His age (17)
Heart murmur
Mild hypertension

Does anyone know if cats with these factors can be allowed to have the treatment?

My final concern is the price for the treatment. A lot of sites just don't post the cost and I fear it will be very $$$$, but I am not sure how much and what will the price cover. What if the treatment don't shrink the tumor, will I have to pay again?

I would like to know from anyone who's ever done this or priced it, how much the treatment is going to cost me (I am in the NY area)

Thanks.
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Old 12-11-2010, 03:28 PM
 
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Done it - glad we did. Our boy was 15 with a heart murmur, so that should not be an issue. Our vet charged $1000, but if he needed it again, they said we'd only be charged for the actual cost of the meds (not all the boarding and maintenance fees again.) It all worked great on the first attempt. He is at a great weight now, and his heart murmur has faded.

The issue with the kidneys is that hyperT can actually mask kidney problems. Our boy does have mild kidney problems and he now eats a canned k/d diet.

The best part is no more pills. He was soooo happy to see after 3 nights at the radio-center. He was never cuddly before - now, we can't keep him off us!

If your cats general health is good - I would recommend it.
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Old 12-13-2010, 07:03 AM
 
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Originally Posted by MissNM View Post
Done it - glad we did. Our boy was 15 with a heart murmur, so that should not be an issue. Our vet charged $1000, but if he needed it again, they said we'd only be charged for the actual cost of the meds (not all the boarding and maintenance fees again.) It all worked great on the first attempt. He is at a great weight now, and his heart murmur has faded.

The issue with the kidneys is that hyperT can actually mask kidney problems. Our boy does have mild kidney problems and he now eats a canned k/d diet.

The best part is no more pills. He was soooo happy to see after 3 nights at the radio-center. He was never cuddly before - now, we can't keep him off us!

If your cats general health is good - I would recommend it.
Hi, thanks for responding and happy that the treatment was successful for your boy!

Was he on methimazole prior to the treatment and if so for how long?

How much weight has he gained since getting it done, my baby is down to 11lbs right now and he feels like skin and bones.

$1,000 is not bad. Did that include the pre screen blood work and that special scan where they measure the size of the thyroid tumor to give the correct dose of radioactive iodine? You mentioned that he was kept for 3 nights. That seems very short, what state did you get this done in because some places are saying 7-10 nights?

What special handling of him is needed after coming home? Can he be in the same room with us or do I have to keep my distance? I am in a very small apartment.
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Old 12-13-2010, 09:21 PM
 
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I think he was on methimazole for about 4 months. It just didn't work for him. The space between his eyes and ears became so irritated that he scratched bloody holes in his head.

He gained about a pound during his 3 days in the kitty slammer. We had the procedure done about 3 years ago and he is a tad over his perfect weight.

They cautioned us against cuddling him more than 10 minutes at a time when we got him home. Didn't think would be an issue as he was not a cuddly kitty. WAS is the operative word - we couldn't keep him off us. At the time, we lived in a VERY small space and couldn't isolate him. Since the hubby and I are healthy and I'm 'fixed', I didn't worry about the exposure. Seriously, cuddling a radiocat can't be any worse than getting a barium scan on our own bodies.

I believe we paid separately for the pre-screen and post-screening bloodwork. But if you think about it, you would be paying that anyway as part of pilling. The cost did include the dosage scans.

They had originally told us 4 days, but he was good in 3. We were in California - and you are right, the state makes a big difference. We did have to isolate his litter leavings for 3 weeks - then dumped them all at once. A big pain because we ad multiple cats and couldn't separate the waste. Let me tell you - it was a big bag of cat cr@p.

No pills - no hassle. It was like overnight freedom for us and whole lot easier on him! He's 17 now, with the very beginning stages of kidney deterioration. No biggie - he's 17. We feed him k/d and he's the happiest cat on earth. What a difference from the scabby little skin and bones that we thought we were going to lose to the grim reaper.
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Old 12-19-2010, 07:27 AM
 
4 posts, read 6,039 times
Reputation: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by MissNM View Post
I think he was on methimazole for about 4 months. It just didn't work for him. The space between his eyes and ears became so irritated that he scratched bloody holes in his head.

He gained about a pound during his 3 days in the kitty slammer. We had the procedure done about 3 years ago and he is a tad over his perfect weight.

They cautioned us against cuddling him more than 10 minutes at a time when we got him home. Didn't think would be an issue as he was not a cuddly kitty. WAS is the operative word - we couldn't keep him off us. At the time, we lived in a VERY small space and couldn't isolate him. Since the hubby and I are healthy and I'm 'fixed', I didn't worry about the exposure. Seriously, cuddling a radiocat can't be any worse than getting a barium scan on our own bodies.

I believe we paid separately for the pre-screen and post-screening bloodwork. But if you think about it, you would be paying that anyway as part of pilling. The cost did include the dosage scans.

They had originally told us 4 days, but he was good in 3. We were in California - and you are right, the state makes a big difference. We did have to isolate his litter leavings for 3 weeks - then dumped them all at once. A big pain because we ad multiple cats and couldn't separate the waste. Let me tell you - it was a big bag of cat cr@p.

No pills - no hassle. It was like overnight freedom for us and whole lot easier on him! He's 17 now, with the very beginning stages of kidney deterioration. No biggie - he's 17. We feed him k/d and he's the happiest cat on earth. What a difference from the scabby little skin and bones that we thought we were going to lose to the grim reaper.
Mine has been on the liquid about 2 weeks and appears to be doing ok, so far no facial scratching.

I am amazed that yours put on weight immediately. I wouldn't think it would be that fast, but it's good. It corrected the condition and added much needed weight. Sounds like a great procedure.

You mentioned the dosage scans, it this the procedure that detects the location, size of the tumors and if they have moved into the chest area? If that's it, some places around here do not use that, rather they dose based on the T4 levels.

You said he's 17 now with the beginning stages of kidney deterioration. Is he on meds for the kidney problem and what is k/d, is that a brand of food?

Oh and about him becoming extra cuddly after the treatment, do you think it's because of the absence from you or do you think the actual treatment and changes in his hormone level caused the behavioral change?
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